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Geography at Menheniot Primary School


The themes that are important to our local area, including tourism, mining and farming, are explored in the wider geographical context through studies in different localities. Whilst wishing children to develop a sense of wonder and awe at all the natural world has to offer, we also want them to understand how other people live in different countries. Through case studies and role play, children develop an empathy with others and an understanding of the issues faced in both rural and urban localities.


We teach Geography in units comprising of blocks of between 6 and 8 lessons. These are based on themes that encompass both human and physical geography and build progressively upon the topics that have been taught in preceding years. Each year group works on three main topics a year.

Alongside developing a knowledge of geographical locations, processes and features, children develop a wide range of geographical skills through field studies and map work. This is built upon each year, for example in Year 1 the children carry out supported map drawing and reading tasks in the classroom, in Year 2 they undertake mapping tasks more independently on a wider scale in the village and in Year 3, the children explore Liskeard.

Year 3 enjoy a Geography Field Trip to Liskeard to develop their mapping skills.

Content of Curriculum 2014


Children will develop a contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places and a knowledge of the processes that give rise to physical and human geographical features. Through fieldwork, they will develop geographical skills such as collecting, analysing and communicating data, interpreting sources of geographical information and communicating geographical information.


In Key Stage 1, they will develop their knowledge about the world, UK and their locality and in Key Stage 2, they will extend their knowledge and understanding beyond the local area to include the UK and Europe, North and South America.

Key Stage 1

Pupils will develop knowledge about the world, the United Kingdom and their locality. They will learn to understand basic subject-specific vocabulary relating to human and physical geography and begin to use geographical skills, including first-hand observation, to enhance their locational awareness. Pupils will be taught:


Location Knowledge

  • to name and locate the world’s seven continents and five oceans

  • to name, locate and identify characteristics of the four countries and capital cities of the United Kingdom and its surrounding seas


Place Knowledge

  • to understand geographical similarities and differences through studying the human and physical geography of a small area of the United Kingdom, and of a small area in a contrasting non-European country


Human and Physical Geography

  • to identify seasonal and daily weather patterns in the United Kingdom and the location of hot and cold areas of the world in relation to the Equator and the North and South Poles

  • to use basic geographical vocabulary to refer to:

    key physical features, including: beach, cliff, coast, forest, hill, mountain, sea, ocean, river, soil, valley, vegetation, season and weather

    key human features, including: city, town, village, factory, farm, house, office, port, harbour and shop


Geographical Skills and Fieldwork

  • to use world maps, atlases and globes to identify the United Kingdom and its countries, as well as the countries, continents and oceans studied at this key stage

  • to use simple compass directions (North, South, East and West) and locational and directional language (e.g. near and far; left and right) to describe the location of features and routes on a map

  • to use aerial photographs and plan perspectives to recognise landmarks and basic human and physical features; devise a simple map; and use and construct basic symbols in a key

  • to use simple fieldwork and observational skills to study the geography of their school and its grounds and the key human and physical features of its surrounding environment.

Key Stage 2

Pupils should extend their knowledge and understanding beyond the local area to include the United Kingdom and Europe, North and South America. This will include the location and characteristics of a range of the world’s most significant human and physical features. They should develop their use of geographical tools and skills to enhance their locational and place knowledge. Pupils will be taught:


Location Knowledge

  • to locate the world’s countries, using maps to focus on Europe (including the location of Russia) and North and South America, concentrating on their environmental regions, key physical and human characteristics, countries, and major cities

  • to name and locate counties and cities of the United Kingdom, geographical regions and their identifying human and physical characteristics, key topographical features (including hills, mountains, coasts and rivers), and land-use patterns; and understand how some of these aspects have changed over time

  • to identify the position and significance of latitude, longitude, Equator, Northern Hemisphere, Southern Hemisphere, the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, Arctic and Antarctic


Place Knowledge

  • to understand geographical similarities and differences through the study of human and physical geography of a region of the United Kingdom, a region in a European country, and a region within North or South America


Human and Physical Geography

  • to describe and understand key aspects of:

    physical geography, including: climate zones, biomes and vegetation belts, rivers, mountains, volcanoes and earthquakes, and the water cycle

    human geography, including: types of settlement and land use, economic activity including trade links, and the distribution of natural resources including energy, food, minerals and water


Geographical Skills and Fieldwork

  • to use maps, atlases, globes and digital/computer mapping to locate countries and describe features studied

  • to use the eight points of a compass, four and six-figure grid references, symbols and key (including the use of Ordnance Survey maps) to build their knowledge of the United Kingdom and the wider world

  • to use fieldwork to observe, measure and record the human and physical features in the local area using a range of methods, including sketch maps, plans and graphs, and digital technologies.